Pharaoh’s Hound by Couchman Creations

An older chart from an Australian designer for Throwback Thursday.

Couchman Creations - Pharaoh's Hound
Couchman Creations – Pharaoh’s Hound

From the Designer

The pictographs surrounding Neferaka, the Pharaoh’s Hound, are a tribute to this regal dog and a rough translation is as follows:

“The eyes of Horus watch from above and gives praise to Maat, Goddess of Order, who gives life and protection to all. Praise be to Anubis who summons Neferaka to protect the spirits passing into rebirth in the after-life. Neferaka sees all the fires of life passing through the gates of heaven. Anubis adores Neferaka and rejoices in him for all time.”

Why this chart?

Pharoah’s Hound and it’s companion chart Pharoah’s Pet were created by Karen Couchman in 1998.  I have seen both stitched and they look magnificent.  Both my mother and I have a fondness for archaeology and anything to do with the Ancient Egyptian Empires so the only questions when I finally stitch these is – whose house will they live in?

Pharoah’s Hound uses whole cross stitch, partial cross stitch, and blackwork. The Hieroglyphics around the outside can be a little tricky but the main chart has swathes of same colour stitching.  I recommend this chart to Ancient Egyptian or Hound lovers of any level of stitching from passionate beginner through to advanced.

Both Pharoah’s Hound and Pharoah’s Pet were first released by Karen Couchman in paper format in 1998.  They are now converted to electronic download by Alan Binding of OzStitch. Pharoah’s Hound has been available for a few years and Pharoah’s Pet makes its appearance this coming weekend.

Pharoah's Hound
Pharoah’s Hound

Review

Pharoah’s Hound was initially released as a printed chart, and is now available as a digital download. I have both in my stash so I will discuss the differences.

The main difference between the printed and digital designs is the bottom border. In the older printed version, this border is left blank with the designer’s name and date stitched in the middle. In the digital version, the lower border has a repeat of the sun motif from the upper border.  I suspect you can stitch whichever you prefer.

There have also been some changes to the partial stitches in the hieroglyphics but I suspect this has more to do with the limitations of the charting software than any deliberate design change.  Just stitch your preferred partial stitches inside the bounds of the backstitching and you will be fine regardless of which version of the chart you use.

Finally the original chart uses DMC 840 to outline the base of the pyramids.  The digital version uses DMC 3371.

The Pharoah’s Hound printed chart is double-sided printed on an A2 glossy heavy paper sheet. This is folded twice to produce an A4 (similar to US Letter) booklet. The coloured side of the paper has:

  • Front cover page with colour image of stitched project
  • General stitching instructions and diagrams for finding your starting point, how to cross stitch, finish a thread, backstitch and cleaning your finished piece.
  • Stitching instructions specific to Pharoah’s Hound such as  fabric choices sizes. Also an explanation of the hieroglyphic border.
  • back cover shows coloured images of other designs by Couchman Creations.

The inside of the unfolded A2 sheet is printed in black on white and has the chart, floss list, stitch count and backstitch instructions. The last of these is crucial as there is no other means to identify what backstitch should be stitched in what colour.

The symbols are quite small and printed in varying shades of grey; both combine to make the hieroglyphics difficult to see. Chart symbols on the folds are prone to wearing off, especially if you fold the chart so that the stitching plans are visible.  For these reasons, I would recommend stitching from the digital download or making a working copy of the chart in sections, enlarging each area for clearer visibility.

The digital download has:

  • front page with digital rendering of the Pharoah’s Pet
  • eight pages of chart
  • one page of the floss key and instructions specific to the Pharoah’s Hound
  • three pages of general stitching how-to’s with diagrams and a glossary

The digital download does not include the history of the hieroglyphic border but has a better chart to stitch from.  The symbols are much larger (almost double sized) and thus easier to see. Each subsequent page has a two-row overlap to help keep your place and the blackwork outlines are shown in colour; differing colours for differing floss.  I prefer to stitch this digital version of the chart.

In both cases the materials list is inside the chart and cannot be seen until the chart is purchased and opened.

Materials Required

To stitch the charts exactly as designed, you will need:

1 skein each – DMC 225, 433, 434, 435, 436, 437, 522, 632, 738, 472, 473, 744, 745, 758, 796, 797, 798, 799, 840, 841, 842, 919, 922, 3064, 3713, 3863, 3864, B5200, Ecru.

DMC 3371 Black Brown

 

2 skeins DMC 3371 Black Brown

 

DMC 796 Royal Blue dk

 

5 skeins DMC 796 Royal Blue dark

 

 

28 count Zweigart Vienna Cloth  (stitch count 150 x 260). Due to the number of partial stitches I highly recommend stitching this project on evenweave or linen.

For 28ct evenweave (with 3″ border allowance) fabric size is: 17” x 25”  or  43 x 63cm  or  a fat quarter (18 x 27″).

Zweigart - Vienna Cloth
Zweigart – Vienna Cloth

Approximate cost for Project

Approximate cost to stitch Pharoah’s Hound using the recommended materials (prices are in $US, at recommended retail and do  not include postage):

Chart: $   7.75
Floss:  $ 15.85
Fabric: $13.30

Total: $36.90    ($61.00 AUD or €53.00  or  £36.75)

Places to Buy

OzStitch sells the printed charts and digital downloads worldwide.

Australia:

Colours Down Under has all the DMC threads and a variety of fabrics in stock. Jo would be happy to order in the printed chart, and offers a 10% discount on the package (chart + floss). Mention this review when ordering.

Colour Cascade Fabrics has a variety of fabrics for you to make this design unique. Tammy recommends Golddigger Old Ma style from her range.  Shoe also suggest (Blue Moon) if you want to leave the sky blank and stitch in the border. Tammy offers a 15% discount for readers of this site. Code is: CSReview. Offer ends 6 December 2014.

Europe:

Casa Cenina in Spain can order the printed chart in for you.  They also stock a variety of fabrics and floss for your unique creation.

United Kingdom:

SewandSo can order in the printed chart and kit it up for you.

Sparklies suggests that this design would suit one of her neutral fabrics such as Barely Bronzed, Parchment, Dr Smith’s Tonic or Oatmeal or you could use  Moonlighting and fill stitch the border.

 

Chromatic Alchemy  has a variety of fabrics for you to custom design your own unique piece.

United States:

123Stitch can order in the printed chart and has the thread in stock and offers a variety of fabrics.

Discussion

Would you stitch this design on a parchment style background or a night-time style background?   Whichever you choose, remember to get enough fabric to stitch both Pharoah’s Hound and Pharoah’s Pet at  the same time so they will match.

Feedback

Did you like this review? Did it contain all the expected information? Is there anything you would like added or removed from the reviews? Do you know of a particular chart or designer you want to see featured here? If so, please head to the Suggestions page and let me know.

Last Updated: 20 November 2014

 

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